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KALW Features PHI’s Dr. Paul English on Extreme Heat & Growing Health Impacts

During KALW-Your Call’s One Planet Series, PHI’s Dr. Paul English shared his expertise on extreme heat, who is most vulnerable during the dangerous, hot weather and the growing health impacts.

woman outside in the heat wiping her face with a towel with man who has hand on her shoulder

“Every year more people in the U.S. die from extreme heat than any other climate fueled disaster, including hurricanes, floods and wildfires. Older people are disproportionately affected.

Between 2010 and 2019, the hottest decade on record, California’s official data from death certificates attributed 599 deaths to heat exposure, but according to a Los Angeles Times analysis, the true toll is six times higher. An examination of mortality data from this period shows that thousands more people died on extremely hot days than would have been typical during milder weather.”

Paul English
We're going to be seeing longer, more frequent heat waves and they'll be happening at different times during the year which is really important because as summers progress the populations go through a process of acclimatization. People, their bodies adapt and behaviors change, and we notice that for example when heat waves happen earlier in the year, they can be more deadly because we don't have time to adapt to those.  Dr. Paul English

Director, Tracking California

Originally published by KALW - Your Call's One Planet Series

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